Geothermal energy for food and water security for Yemen: a review

Abstract

Yemen’s economy, food security, and energy have touched rock bottom due to the 2015 devastating war. The country’s imports have plunged from 13,292 million US$ in 2013 to 6580 US$ in 2015. In order to help Yemen fight poverty and hunger, the Food and Agricultural Organization of the United Nations Organization proposed to spend 218.5 million US$ to support about 80 million people affected due to food scarcity and hunger. In this paper, it is shown that part of this fund can be spent to develop geothermal energy in Yemen to provide food and energy security permanently. The cost of developing 1057 × 106 kWh of power from the Damt site would cost around 80 billion US$. Developing two such sites would cost well below the aid proposed by the (FAO 2019). This power can be utilized to establish desalination plants to provide fresh water. This will provide a permanent solution to water and food scarcity in the country. The levelized cost of generating 1 MWh power from geothermal sources is about 76 US$. Developing two such sites would cost well below the aid proposed by the FAO. According to the earlier work, 173 billion liters of freshwater can be generated using 1057 × 106 kWh of geothermal energy at 278 billion US$. Using fossil fuels, as source energy for desalination, the freshwater generation cost would be similar but at the cost of huge CO2 emissions.

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The author thanks the Director, IITH, for providing facilities to write this paper.

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Correspondence to Dornadula Chandrasekharam.

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Responsible Editor:Amjad Kallel

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Chandrasekharam, D. Geothermal energy for food and water security for Yemen: a review. Arab J Geosci 14, 253 (2021). https://doi.org/10.1007/s12517-021-06668-5

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Keywords

  • Geothermal energy
  • Desalination
  • Yemen
  • Food security
  • Groundwater